PWP: 'War on the Mainland' recap and post-fight discussion for 'Sylvia vs Buentello'


Powerhouse World Promotions: "War on the Mainland" has come to a close from the Bren Events Center in Irvine, California.

The pay-per-view event featured three world title fights, including a heavyweight main event between former two-time UFC champion Tim Sylvia and fellow MMA journeyman Paul Buentello. Several other ex-UFC fighters and recognizable names were in action on the card as well.

Here's how it all went down.

In the headliner, Tim Sylvia became a champion again by executing a fantastic gameplan for nearly two rounds before stopping the hard hitting Buentello with a series of strikes capped off by a brutal uppercut with just seconds remaining in the second frame.

"The Maine-iac" used his weight to wear "The Headhunter" down by pinning him into the corner and smothering him with knees and dirty boxing from the clinch. Buentello got off with a few nice counter punches on some of the breaks, but Sylvia kept putting him back into the corner after every time the referee would call for a separation.

Buentello had no answer for the methodical attack, and eventually Sylvia found an opening to put him away. It was a very impressive performance for the big man.

Afterward, Pedro Rizzo was brought into the ring and he was announced as Sylvia's opponent for his first title defense. Both men are known for their striking ability, and it's a solid fight to look forward to in the future for this young promotion.

Six-foot, five-inch Muay Thai specialist Tony Lopez captured the light heavyweight crown with a stunning second round knockout win over Jason "The Punisher" Lambert in the co-featured championship fight of the night.

"Kryptonite" had a difficult time keeping a relentless Lambert off of him in the early going. They spent a lot of time clinch, and Lambert appeared to be executing a winnable gameplan. If not for one small error, he may have been able to grind out the victory.

However, early in the second round, Lambert stumbled to the mat out of the clinch and Lopez made him pay with a devastating knee as he tried to get back to his feet. Lambert crumbled and Lopez landed one or two extra punches for good measure before the referee intervened.

Former International Fight League (IFL) champion Matt Horwich and one-time UFC middleweight number one contender Thales Leites squared off for the right to be named the first ever PWP middleweight title holder.

Both men specialize in submissions, but not many people expected the fight to end the way it did. Leites, a Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt, had never been submitted in a fight coming into tonight, but "The Fighting Hippie" put and end to that early in the fourth round when he tapped out the skilled ground technician with a rear naked choke.

Horwich was likely behind on the cards heading into the championship rounds, but he kept grinding away in the clinch and on the ground. Eventually the grind took it's toll on the Brazilian, and a tireless Horwich was able secure a super impressive victory and a new championship belt for his trophy case.

Thirty-six year old former UFC lightweight champion Jens Pulver came into tonight looking to get back into the win column for the first time since 2007. Five straight losses, including three in a row by submission have left the MMA world wondering if "Little Evil" can still compete at a high level in this sport.

Diego Garijo may have answered that question for us, if we didn't already know it.

For the fourth straight time, Pulver was handed defeat by submission inside the first round. Once again he was out-hustled by a younger fighter and beaten to the punch early on. He ended up on his back after a combination of strikes, and he never made it back to his feet. Garijo wasted no time capitalizing on an exposed neck and forced Jens to tap to a guillotine choke just over a minute into the match.

Brazilian middlewight Gustavo Machado and Lion's Den trainee Rick Reeves opened up the pay-per-view telecast with a fantastic back and forth striking war. Both men used a variety of strikes throughout the 15 minutes to make their case with the judges, but in the end a split decision was awarded to Machado.

That's a wrap from Irvine. For full coverage of the event check out our blow-by-blow commentary here.

An action packed month of mixed martial arts continues this Wednesday night with WEC 50: "Cruz vs. Benavidez" on the Versus network and then on Saturday night with Strikeforce: "Houston" on Showtime.

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